Sinn Féin spokesperson on Transport, Darren O’Rourke TD, has called for government action to address the impact rising fuel costs are having on motorists and hauliers.
The Meath East TD said:
“With prices approaching two euro per litre at the forecourts, the government must act to address the impact this is having on motorists and the haulage sector.
“I have been in touch with hauliers and bus operators throughout the week. All have expressed their deep concerns about the price and availability of fuel.
“Every one of them are struggling to operate with diesel prices at their current high level.
“Others have cited difficulties accessing fuel supplies. Government must ensure there is neither price gouging nor hoarding arising out of the current international fuel crisis.
“Notwithstanding the very real challenges at this time, it is essential that government act to provide as much information, assurance and support as possible. That has not happened to date.
“The haulage sector met with the Minister for Transport last month and put forward a proposal to expand the diesel rebate scheme to help hauliers through the current situation, for example. This was rejected, and the government has brought forward no alternatives.
“While some factors feeding fuel price rises are out of the hands of the government, others are not. There are clear options but government, perhaps for ideological reasons, have their heads buried in the sand.
“Last month Sinn Féin brought forward proposals that would put money back in people’s pockets and help them through the current cost of living crisis, a crisis that is being driven by high energy and fuel costs.
“The government’s proposals fell far short of what is needed.
“I have contacted Ministers Ryan and Naughton about this today. As Ministers with responsibility it is essential they prioritise this issue as a matter of urgency.”